Mobilizing the Voices of California’s College Students

Guest Blog By: Becky Fein*

img_2387On November 3, Each Mind Matters partner Active Minds hosted a Mental Health Policy Day bringing together representatives from UC, CSU and community college campuses across California. The event provided an opportunity for students to learn from and work alongside the legislators, lobbyists and staff who are furthering the progressive mental health policies in our state. Each Mind Matters was onsite all day spreading the word about California’s Mental Health Movement and connecting with a diverse and inspirational group of student leaders.

The day began with breakfast and a speaking program that featured student organizers discussing key issues that impact student mental health in California. Jeanice Warden-Washington, Principal Consultant for the Assembly Higher Education Committee, provided a keynote address that educated attendees about the legislative process and provided strategies and tactics for effectively advocating for img_2358 student mental health. An afternoon session with staff members and representatives from the Steinberg Institute generated a collaborative discussion exploring the current landscape of student mental health-related legislation. Tours of the State Capitol, networking and Q&A sessions rounded out the day and provided an opportunity for students to come together around a shared vision for campus mental health in California.

Mental Health Policy Day was made possible by the Foundation for California Community Colleges and CalMHSA/Each Mind Matters (funded by counties through voter-approved Prop. 63).

becky-feinBecky Fein is the California Statewide Program Manager at Active Minds, Inc. She oversees and leads the Active Minds California Mental Health Services Act (CalMHSA) funded initiative. Becky brings a background in peer health education, college health outreach, and public health promotion. Before Active Minds, Becky spent several years working with Santa Rosa Junior College and Sonoma State University in the development of their CalMHSA Campus-Based Grants and mental health promotion programs. She is the Founding Director of the Powerful Voices Project, a documentary film series that tells stories of recovery and resilience after experiencing sexual assault. With a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from University of California, Davis, and a Master’s of Public Health from Columbia University, Becky has a deeply rooted passion and academic background in social justice and positive cultural change.

*Guest blog: Each Mind Matters provides a platform for open dialogue and varying perspectives about mental health. The opinions of the author of guest blogs don’t necessarily reflect those of Each Mind Matters. If you have questions or comments about a blog written by a guest writer we encourage you to continue the discussion with the author by contacting the organization listed in the bio.